Patriots do not storm their own Capitol over a lost election. They do not bum rush members of Congress. They do not assault strangers. They do not push and shove police officers and trash federal buildings. These are things criminals do, and criminals of any political stripe deserve one thing: the rule of law.
Pro-Trump supporters storm the U.S. Capitol following a rally with President Donald Trump on January 6, 2021 in Washington, DC. Trump supporters gathered in the nation’s capital today to protest the ratification of President-elect Joe Biden’s Electoral College victory over President Trump in the 2020 election. (Photo by Samuel Corum/Getty Images)
While Congress convened Jan. 6, 2020, to certify the electoral votes for President Elect-Joe Biden — an act that has been performed, for the most part throughout history, peacefully and without incident — the city outside swelled as tens of thousands of protestors whipped themselves into a #stopthesteal frenzy. Eventually, many of them descended on the Capitol building, hellbent on disrupting the American constitutional process. (RELATED: GOP Congressman: ‘This Is A Coup Attempt’)
As this summer’s political protests escalated into rioting and lawlessness, many of us pointed out how unacceptable that was for any reason. This situation is no different. Every single one of the people who stormed that building and participated in that rank, un-American lawlessness should be in jail. There are prodigious photos and video evidence. Law enforcement officials should find them and prosecute them, all of them, no exceptions.
Protesters gather on the U.S. Capitol Building on January 06, 2021 in Washington, DC. Pro-Trump protesters entered the U.S. Capitol building after mass demonstrations in the nation’s capital during a joint session Congress to ratify President-elect Joe Biden’s 306-232 Electoral College win over President Donald Trump. (Photo by Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images)
The reason why is simple: The peaceful transfer of power is a hallmark of western democracy. It is the cornerstone of everything we love. It is apple pie. It’s lining up and shaking hands when the clock hits zero. We have ways to resolve political disputes, including election disputes. What happened in Washington is not on the list. If we want to end the cycle of political violence — and it has become a cycle — now is the time to set the precedent. (RELATED: ‘Tried To Disrupt Our Democracy, They Failed’ — McConnell Slams Rioters Who Stormed Capitol Building)
The left excused this summer’s rioting as “mostly peaceful.” The same could be said of the events in Washington. It’s irrelevant. “Mostly” is not the standard to which we should aspire. Political violence is wrong. Period. This was true in 2016 when the #NotMyPresident rioters disrupted the Trump Inaugural and it’s true today. Rule of law is an essential element of our peaceful transition of power. The people who stormed that building do not represent the vast majority of America.